Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Strand Bookstore, NYC


Do you love a good book store? Unfortunately, in this world of online book warehouse ordering and e-readers, bookstores are becoming a rare sight, even in a mega city like New York City.  I was very happy, recently, to see one of my favorite independent Manhattan bookstores was still open and thriving--the Strand Bookstore. Located at 12th Street and Broadway in Manhattan, the Strand Bookstore, is still selling its legendary "18 miles of new, used and rare books!" (Click on all photos in this post to enlarge them for easier viewing)


The bookstore was first opened on Fourth Avenue in 1927, opened by Ben Brass. It was one of 48 bookstores located in the area called "Book Row." He named the store after London street where writers such as Thackery, Dickens and Mill once gathered, and where book publishers thrived. In 1957 the Strand Bookstore moved to its present location and is the only bookstore survivor of Book Row's past.


The Strand has four floors of books--an estimated 2.5 million books! Their Rare Books Room on the top floor has shelves filled with leather bound books--some signed by authors such as Joyce, Chagall and Twain. It often hosts events with authors and the room can be rented for your own special event.  You can also browse their collection of rare books for sale at this link.



One could spend many hours browsing in the Strand Bookstore. They also sell books online at this link, and you can also spend hours perusing the many books they offer in different categories, from Americana to Weddings! In addition, they offer a selection of Audio Books, DVDs, Blu-Rays and Music CDs through their online shop.


Assorted literary themed merchandise and giftware can also be found in their aisles and online. Their canvas tote bags are carried by many New Yorkers, and are one of their best selling items.


One of my favorite sections in the Strand Bookstore is the travel section! Here, I can pack a virtual suitcase and travel through the many enticing books about all the places I would like to visit one day. What is your favorite section of a bookstore?

You can see an interesting 1996 video with Mr. Bass' son talking about the Strand Bookstore at this C-Span video link.


If you are fortunate enough to be able to visit the brick and motor Strand Bookstore you will also be in an interesting older area of Manhattan, in the Greenwich Village neighborhood. As you can see in the photo collage above, this neighborhood has views of both the Empire State Building and One World Trade Center. I've done quite a few blog posts about this area, which you can read under this blog label link. It is definitely one of my favorite neighborhoods in New York City and one I'd encourage all to include on a visit to New York!

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30 comments:

Daniela said...

Oh my, I really feel fascinated by all these shelf filled with thousands of book, Pat !
This would truly be the right bookstore for me, I love spending hours and hours leafing books before than buying them .. I know I'm a little ancient but I admit I still cannot buy books on-line !!!

Thank you my dear friend, I wish you a great Sunday and a lovely week ahead xox
Dany

eileeninmd said...

Pat, what a huge bookstore. I am happy to hear they are still thriving.. I believe people still like to hold books more than the ereaders.. Great post, thanks for sharing. Have a happy week!

From the Kitchen said...

My favorite section of a book store? May I choose more than one? If so, they would be cooking, travel, politics and literary fiction. Oh, and a little cafe tucked away to start reading in!

Best,
Bonnie

Carol Z said...

One of my favorite neighborhoods, too. Haven't been down in the East Village in a couple of months. I think it's time for another visit soon.

Lynn@Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

I love that the store is so big it has a directory:@)

Michelle said...

This looks like heaven to me!

Vee said...

Oh if I could tolerate crowds, you would find me on the fifth floor. After that, I'd enjoy the children's books section. Thank you for the tour!

Sarah said...

It's huge and thriving! Wonderful news for book lovers. We have very few book stores remaining here.

gracieplace said...

I might be one of the few people left without an e-book or something like that. I still like to have pages to flip.....

Betsy Adams said...

I guess a person could spend a week in that store... I'm sure they have EVERYTHING anyone could ever want... That is NEAT.
Hugs,
Betsy

Molly said...

I love book shops... I find it very hard to pass one by

Mollyxxx

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Oh, I could spend days in this place! I love books and it would be hard to select a favorite section. It's sad to see so many shops (of all kinds) dwindling because of online shopping, isn't it? Thanks for sharing this wonderful bookstore with us!

Pondside said...

An afternoon - would that be too much to ask?........and afternoon in that bookstore. I'd be in heaven!

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

What a fabulous bookstore. I really hate that more and more bookstores are going by the wayside, especially for those who love to read.
Sam

SmilingSally said...

Hi Pat,

What a fabulous place! I love reading.

Isn’t it fun finding blues to share? Thanks for playing today.

Happy Blue Monday!

diane b said...

I love bookstores and it is a shame that they are suffering from online sales and ebooks. This one looks a beauty and I hope it remains. My favourite part of a bookstore is the biography section.

ladyfi said...

That is quite a lovely bookstore!

Spare Parts and Pics said...

So glad that this bookstore is still thriving. So many have disappeared. Great post!

Barbara said...

Pat, I, too, feel the loss of bookstores. While buying books on-line is so easy and convenient, that is not as satisfying as spending time in a physical store looking at the titles and perusing through books that intrigue me.

Your post reminded me of the movie, "You've Got Mail," with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.

Fun60 said...

That looks like a place I could spend hours browsing.

La Petite Gallery said...

I love the smell of an ole book shop. Glad to see you got back to NYC. I can remember the smell of
the Camden book store in 1960.
I loved it there was a lamp and chair's and ton's of ole whale
prints. Funny how I thought of that.
yvonne

Jim said...

An interesting post indeed.

mrs. c said...

Every time we visit NYC, the Strand is on our list! We can spend hours sitting in the floor, looking at books! I adore this wonderful NYC LAndmark!

Daniela said...

My dear friend, I don't know how often you check your mail, so I'm here to let you know that I've sent you an e-mail and I'd love you to read it and write me an answer as soon as possible.
Thank you so much with all my heart <3
Dany

Annesphamily said...

Rebekah would love it! She is so into books she often just goes into her own world! LOL! But it is always fun to visit such wonderful stores like this. Thanks for sharing Pat.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Now that is my kind of place!

Pat said...

This is a great blog! I'm spending a week in the city later this month and have used your blog to find many off-the-beaten-path places to visit.

Yvette said...

Oh Pat, the Strand is one of my very favorite places in the whole universe. Though I've only ever been there once. My daughter and I spend a happy afternoon there years ago and I've never forgotten it. The books!!!!! I had to control myself to keep from blowing my monthly budget in one day. Ha. You know how that goes. The Strand is a paradise of a book store. Plain and simple. Thanks for this wonderful post. Ah, memories.

toby said...

Oh, I've heard wonderful stories about that place, but never actually seen it myself... thanks so much for sharing these!!

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

this was a fun post / yes bookstores are closing left and right ; it's sad.